Written by Franz Kafka
Adapted by Peter Kuper
Retro Review by Dave Borders
The dark tale of despair and alienation is here adapted into graphic narrative form by Peter Kuper.
I chose to review this particular book because of how different it is than the traditional fare found on comic shelves. I appreciate the inherent risks in undertaking this daring task and I applaud Kuper for it.
The reality is it is a perfect choice for a graphic novel and it is ideal for the target audience of graphic novels as well. Assign Kafka’s masterpiece to a High School youth and you will doubtless be bombarded with incessant moans and groans. Yet who feels more disaffected and alone than an angst filled teen?
“When Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from disturbing dreams, he found himself transformed…” so begins our tale. Young Gregor was a decent person who worked hard and tried to do right by the people around him. When his situation takes a sudden turn he finds himself with no one to comfort him. He needs a helping hand, a listening ear, or a compassionate soul, but finds only animosity and neglect.
This dark tale which is said to be filled with sardonic humor is matched perfectly by Kuper’s illustrations. He brings us into Gregor’s world and fills us with a sense of unease. The despair can almost be felt on each successive page. The style has been described as raw and expressionistic and it is perfectly suited for this tale.
The best part of all for a young goth is the fact that there is no ‘happily ever after’ ending either. Ah, the pain, the suffering!
Dave Borders is staff reporter for Comicbookinterviews.com and specializes in thought provoking, in-depth reviews of comics of the past.
Dave is also a self-publisher and along with his son has self-published Inteli-corps the story of ten genetically modified animals that have been created to search the universe for a precious element found only in a rare plant.
Dave can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org